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Study pinpoints best and worst entry-level jobs

There’s often pressure to find a job soon after graduation which can be difficult during the COVID-19 pandemic.

To help students see what jobs are in-demand WalletHub.com compiled data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Oxford Martin School at the University of Oxford, Indeed.com and Salary.com to rank 108 entry-level jobs putting them in two different categories the worst and the best.

These were based on three main factors including immediate opportunity, growth potential and occupational hazards. The best entry-level job shown is Systems Engineer I with the respective worst job being Welder I.

However, the data shows each best and worst entry-level job for its respective category. For example, Employee Relations specialist is the job with the most income growth potential while the job most projected to grow by 2029 is a Certified Occupational Therapist.

WalletHub interviewed people who are familiar with this topic, and how graduate students should look for jobs. These were referred to as experts.  

One of those experts is Dr. Jason Huang, an associate professor and associate director for Graduate programs, in the School of Human Resources and Labor Relations at Michigan State University. He speaks on what new-graduate students should do if they think an entry-level job is not a good fit. 

“However, if it becomes very clear to a new graduate that an entry-level job does not fit them, whether because of the tasks, the overall work environment, or the organization’s values, I would suggest they start looking for a change sooner than later,” he said. “That could mean modifying or “crafting” their current job, but more often than not, they need to look for another job that presents a better fit.”

Not only is finding in-demand jobs important, but the location of that job determine potential growth. WalletHub conducted another study regarding location as a factor to how well college students can receive jobs across factors including job-market strength, opportunity and economic growth and ranked them from worst to best as well.

According to their data, the top states include South Dakota, Nebraska and Washington. Among the worst-ranked states include Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Kentucky.

Again, the data can then be further broken down by category like states with most job opportunities or states with the lowest employment growth.

According to a WalletHub expert associated with this study, one of the key factors that can make finding a job so difficult is the fact that many positions are being either automated by a machine or can be handled by a robot.

“Researchers and business executives have long been predicting an increase in job automation and it is probably safe to say that the tipping point for automation has arrived accelerated, perhaps, by the sweeping effects of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Dr. Victoria Shivy, associate professor of psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University.

It’s important for students to do their research to find what job best fits them and their goals as things can vary from field to field as well as location.

To read the full report and additional thoughts from the experts follow the links below:

Best and Worst Entry-Level Jobs: https://wallethub.com/edu/best-entry-level-jobs/3716

Best and Worst States for Jobs: https://wallethub.com/edu/best-states-for-jobs/35641#expert=Victoria_Shivy

Witten by Isabella Schneider, copy editor. Image courtesy of YourFreeCareerTest.

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